It’s horrible to watch someone that you love vanish. It’s worse still when that person is replaced by something that looks exactly like them, sounds just like them…but is cruel and manipulative and unkind. Not like them at all.
It’s horrible to be the only person who sees that something is wrong. Denial is powerful. The love of a parent for a child is powerful. The two together are an almost unstoppable force. Logic, facts and evidence all fall in the face of it.
It’s horrible to feel angry and resentful, worse still to feel this way almost constantly. When you go out of your way each time to avert a disaster, to fix a mess, to prevent the next meltdown…and for what? So that one person doesn’t have to take care of himself? So that your mother doesn’t cry? The latter is a valid reason, but you do these things with the expectation that something will change. It never does.
It’s horrible to only be able to do so much. It’s horrible to want to do less.
It’s horrible to feel the slow, creeping realisation that this time it’s different. This time it’s not just bullying jackassery; this time it’s racing speech and unfinished thoughts, yelling and crying-noises. This time it’s “What do you think about racist music?” and actual, textbook definition hysterical laughter. It’s “I hate you, you’re not my sister” repeated over and over. It’s suicidal threats which become homicidal threats, and suddenly you’re trying to calculate whether you can get to the nearest lockable door if he decides to act on the things he’s saying about you.
It’s horrible to call 911 because you’re afraid that your brother is going to hurt himself or someone else.
It’s horrible to watch the police take him away, so agitated that he can’t stop yelling even as he’s put in the ambulance.
It’s horrible to have no idea what’s going to happen now or how this is going to be.
It’s horrible not to be able to think of the word for what used to called asylums.
It’s horrible not to know what’s going on in the ward where he’s being kept, safe for now from everyone, even himself.
It’s horrible to feel relieved.
It’s horrible to think that maybe having kids isn’t such a good idea if this is what lies latent in your family tree.
It’s horrible not to be able to make sense out of any of it. It’s horrible to try.
But this is me trying anyway. This is the only way I know how.
I’m not going to sign off the way I usually do, but I do really love you.